PREVENTION AND REHABILITATION OF GIRLS WHO ARE VICTIMS OF TRAFFICKING: UJJAWALA SCHEME, MINISTRY OF WOMEN AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT, GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
Human Trafficking has become a burning issue in Assam, especially in the remote villages. According to the National Crime Records Bureau (2015), 1,494 cases of human trafficking was registered in Assam as compared to the data in 2012 and 2010 when the record was 154 and 103 respectively. The recent years have seen a steep rise in trafficking of young women and girls from different parts of Assam.
Young girls are lured by the traffickers every year with the help of relatives or known persons in the pretext of jobs. These girls end up falling into the nexus of the traffickers who force them into prostitution, or to work as unpaid domestic help or at dance bars and clubs. Baksa and Udalguri are the two remote districts of Assam, where hundreds of trafficking cases have been identified and vulnerable girls are the target.
ACRD has been trying to combat trafficking, and has implemented the Ujjawala Project in these districts under Ministry of Women & Child Development to prevent and rehabilitate girls who are victims of trafficking. We have engaged in generating awareness among the community, by organising meetings and advocacy programmes with the help of the local community and civil society organisations.
These programmes and meetings have served as a platform for us to reach out to trafficked girls. Most girls are trafficked after being promised jobs in cities like Mumbai, Kolkata, Delhi, etc. These girls are mostly rescued from railway stations and other public places.
To help them lead a normal life again, ACRD has set up a rehabilitation home named ‘Navajeevan in Sikarhati village of Palasbari circle, Kamrup district. Rescued girls are brought to the home, where they are monitored and counseled for a minimum of six months to one year.
The girls are medically examined by a Physician and counseled by an appointed Counselor regularly. Routine health check-ups are conducted. In order to help these girls overcome the trauma of their ordeal, they are engaged in various activities, which include singing, dancing, drama, poetry recitation, prayer, meditation, indoor and outdoor games, etc. These activities are a part of our efforts to help in their mental and cognitive development.
Various income-generating activities like handloom, tailoring, doll making, flower making and beauty courses are also given to ensure that are able to lead a normal and a dignified life again.
There is a provision for non-formal schooling for the girls in the home. A library has been setup so that they can spend their leisure hours reading. The home also has a legal support cell that provides necessary support when required.
The girls practice yoga regularly at Navajeevan home
The girls of Navajeevan with a visitor
The girls are given training on tailoring and cutting at Navajeevan Rehabilitation Home
Navajeevan Rehabilitation Home for Women
Flower making training to the girls of Navajeevan Rehabilitation Home
Jute products made by the girls of Navajeevan
Beauty parlour training to the girls of Navajeevan home
An awareness programme by our field staff on trafficking of girls and women in a village of Baksa district